Challenge Based Learning: Content Matters
A key concept of CBL is to use the internet to research topics and then use the results to make a digital media output for peer-to-peer sharing. While technology provides the tools, content is important as well.
Digital content needs to be specifically designed for this approach to learning. The resource needs to be flexible enough to allow a variety of outcomes and styles of learning, and in particular to encourage and support further research and enquiry. Ideally it will also provide structured starting points and useful materials for learners to use in their digital projects. Well-designed resources will support independent and analytical thought, creativity, self-expression and the making of work for sharing.
Gamification of learning is relevant here too. This can be described as the satisfaction achieved by a series of small achievements contributing to a major one, at each step there is the reward of successful completion of the task, a successful webquest for example.
Typically the output from CBL uses digital media to share a project peer-to-peer, often using social media platforms to do so. The act of sharing with friends and classmates is crucial to the process as this makes the project real.
A wonderful example of students using digital media for their final output, shared peer-to-peer on social media. This could have been about any subject (e.g. environment, citizenship, bicycle lanes etc.)
With the right resources CBL can enhance digital literacy, and lends itself to teamwork and a variety of learning paces and styles.
Guest Contributor: Camilla Fanning Director of the Dublin based www.eu4schools.com
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